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Saturday, 26 September 2015

Award for persons with disabilities - Guwahati

The city-based charitable trust, Indian Institute of Research and Development for Differently Abled (iirdda), has announced the institution of an annual award to be known as the ‘iirdda Award’ for persons with disabilities having outstanding performance in different fields of activities.

The award will be instituted from the current year and it will carry a cash prize of Rs 1, 00, 000 (one lakh), besides a citation and a cheleng chadar, said iirdda honorary managing director Dr Ramani Barman in a statement here today.

iirdda has decided to request the Governor to present the award and the Chief Minister to attend the function as a distinguished guest.

A three-member committee has been constituted to select the winner of the award for the current year with Dr Atul Sarma, former VC of the Rajiv Gandhi University, Arunachal Pradesh, as well as a noted economist as chairman, Dr HL Duorah, former VC, Gauhati University, and former Asam Sahitya Sabha president and veteran journalist Kanaksen Deka as members, said Dr Barman. The award will be presented at a function scheduled to be held at the Machkhowa Pragjyoti ITA Centre for Performing Arts on December 3.

iirdda has been working for persons with disabilities since its inception. Its activities include conducting various kinds of workshops, seminars, awareness camps for disabled persons and educational research for persons with disabilities.

This year the institute has started a specially designed modular degree course for the deaf and HS course for blind students of the region, said Dr Barman.

Source : Assam tribune , 22nd Sep 2015

Equipment worth Rs. 42 lakh distributed to persons with disabilities - Karnataka

The Mandya Zilla Panchayat, in association with the Red Cross Society of India, distributed aids and appliances worth Rs. 42 lakh to 697 persons with disabilities at the Red Cross Society in the town on Tuesday.
The zilla panchayat had procured the equipment from the Artificial Limbs Manufacturing Corporation of India, with the association of the Department for Empowerment of Disabled and Senior Citizens.
Additional Deputy Commissioner B.R. Poornima and Red Cross vice-president (Mandya) Meera Shivalingaiah distributed the equipment.

The equipment included tricycles, wheelchairs, crutches, spectacles and artificial limbs.

Panchayat president Komala Swamy, Mandya Taluk Panchayat president Mahesh, Mandya City Municipal Council (CMC) president Lokesh, District Health Officer H.M. Manchegowda, and Deputy Director of Women and Child Welfare Department K. Diwakar were present.

Source : The Hindu , 22nd Sep 2015

States will pick 50 spots to make more disabled-friendly after PM's Mann ki Baat speech

Fifty spots in over 50 cities of the country are all set to be made disabled-friendly. 
The move comes after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s immensely popular ‘Mann ki Baat’ radio talk helped give wings to the idea mooted by scores of people, who all wrote to the PM on the issue.

The government has now asked each state to identity 50-100 public buildings in big cities to be made easily accessible for the differently-abled persons under the ‘Accessible India Campaign’ (Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan). 
First episode

In his very first episode of ‘Mann ki Baat’, PM Modi had expressed his concern about the needs of the specially-abled people, particularly children. He had mentioned Gautam Pal, who had written to the PM highlighting the difficulties.

“He (Gautam Pal) has suggested forming separate municipality, municipal corporation or councils for them. We need to plan something for them for enhancing their moral support. I liked his suggestion and I have experienced this during my days as the chief minister of Gujarat,” Modi had said.

Following the episode, various ministries set out to work to address the concern. While the HRD ministry started a scheme to award scholarships to specially-abled children aspiring to study in technical institutes, the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (DEPwD) under the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment formulated the Accessible India Campaign (Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan) as a nationwide drive to achieve universal accessibility. DEPwD is intensively engaging with the public to make the project a success.

A group ‘caring for the specially-abled’ has been created on website to involve the people directly.

“Discussions on the website have received a huge response. Currently, it is for 50 cities which includes Varanasi, Faridabad, Ludhiana, Dehradun, Silvassa, Shimla and Nashik. The suggestions received from the people will be submitted to the concerned ministry for further action,” a senior official associated with the website said.

In his first episode of Mann ki Baat, PM Narendra Modi had expressed his concern about the needs of differently-abled people.
In his first episode of Mann ki Baat, PM Narendra Modi had expressed his concern about the needs of differently-abled people.

Three targets

A senior DEPwD official said the campaign targets three separate verticals for achieving universal accessibility, namely the built-up environment, transportation ecosystem and information and communication ecosystem. 

The campaign has ambitious targets with defined timelines and will use IT and social media for spreading awareness and seeking engagement of various stakeholders.

“The department has also asked various state governments to identify about 50 to 100 public buildings in big cities and also identify citizen-centric public websites which, if made fully accessible, would have the highest impact on the lives of PwDs. 

Once identified, ‘Access Audit’ of these buildings and websites will be conducted by professional agencies. As per the audit findings, retrofitting and conversion of buildings, transport and websites would be undertaken by various government departments,” the official said. 

Officials said the DEPwD is collaborating with the ministries of home, health and family welfare and tourism, for creating accessible police stations, hospitals and tourist spots, respectively across the country. 

The department is also coordinating with the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting for enhancing accessibility of television programmes by incorporating features like captioning, textto- speech and audio description. 

Moreover, the DEPwD is also in the process of creating a mobile  app along with a web portal for crowd-sourcing the requests regarding inaccessible places. 
A click away 

“With the app, any person would be able to click a photograph or video of an inaccessible public place and upload the same to the ‘Accessible India’ portal. The portal will process the request for access audit, financial sanction and final retrofitting of the building to make it completely accessible,” an official said. 

The government will also seek engagement of big corporates and PSUs. They will be asked to offer their help to conduct access audit and for accessibility-conversion of the buildings, transport and websites.

As an offshoot of the campaign, the department has also sought ‘Expression of Interest’ from IT firms to prepare the app in all Indian languages to locate nearest accessible places.

Source : Daily Mail , 21st Sep 2015

Work on UID cards for disabled persons to begin in 2016: Govt

Union Social Justice and Empowerment Minister Thawar Chand Gehlot today said that work on the 'Universal Identity Card', announced last year to ascertain the exact number of physically challenged citizens in the country, would begin from February next.

The minister said the Universal ID Card project will not only help know the exact count of physically challenged population, but will also enable them access benefits of various Central government schemes.
Gehlot was in the city to launch the "Accessible India Campaign" under which selective public places will be developed as "disabled friendly".

He said people with lesser degree of physical deformity will also be considered as 'disabled' and issued ID cards and that his ministry has tabled a Bill in the Parliament which has widened the criteria of disabilities from existing seven categories to 19 categories.

"We hope that in coming the Winter session of Parliament, when the bill is passed, disabled persons will be recognized under 19 categories as against current seven," Gehlot told reporters.

"The Census (figures) does not provide a clear and proper picture on the actual number of disabled persons. Our ministry has decided to conduct a country-wide survey to identify people with disabilities and issue them universal ID cards," he said.

Under the Accessible India Campaign, Gehlot said, the department has identified 48 cities across all states of the country where 100 public buildings would be selected in each city by the state government, which would be equipped with disabled friendly infrastructure such as fixing ramp, urinals, public dealing counters, etc.
In Maharashtra, the buildings would be identified in cities Mumbai, Nagpur, Nashik and Pune.

Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis on the occasion said his government will extend all the efforts and facilities rendered by the Centre to the differently-abled persons.

"Western culture speaks about survival of the fittest. But our culture, and government talks that whosoever is born here will live the life full dignity and this project (Accessible India Campaign) is an example of it," Fadnavis said.

Union minister of state of Krishnapal Gujar, cabinet ministers Diwakar Raote, Rajkumar Badole, actor Vivek Oberoi were also present at the programme.

Source : Zee News , 24th Sep 2015

MoU for health insurance cover for disabled persons signed

A memorandum of understanding was signed today for providing comprehensive and affordable health insurance cover for the Persons with Disabilities (PwDs).

According to an official statement here, Trust Fund for Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities under the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities, Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment signed an MoU with New India Assurance Company Limited for Swavlamban Health Insurance Scheme for PwDs here.

The Swavlamban Health Insurance Scheme, which has been designed to deliver comprehensive cover to the beneficiary and their family members, has a single premium across age band and can be availed by PwDs between the age of 18 and 65 years with an annual family income of less than Rs 3,00,000.

Swavlamban Health Insurance Scheme has been conceived with the objective of providing affordable health insurance for persons with blindness, low vision, leprosy-cured, hearing impairment, loco-motor disability, mental Retardation and mental illness, the statement said.

It also aims at improving the general health condition and quality of life of persons with disabilities, the statement added.

Source : Business Standard Via PTI , 21st Sep 2015

Accessibility audit at govt buildings - Vadodra

The district administration will ensure that all disabled persons get easy access to government buildings.

The administration will conduct a handicapped accessibility audit of all the government offices. The audit would identify spots and areas that can be converted for easy accessibility to the disabled.

Also, the administration plans to ensure that students studying in schools have disability certificates.

A drive to make this possible has been suggested by district collector Avantika Singh. The administration plans to conduct the work for disability certificates for school students in coordination with the district education department.

The decision was taken at a meeting of the two committees formed for the welfare of disabled in the city. It was decided that the Viklang Dhara Committee will work for providing certification, benefits of schemes for handicapped and will discuss various issued faced by the handicapped apart from monitoring the work done for them in the district.

Another local level committee formed under the National Trust Act 1999 will look into the welfare of persons with cerebral palsy, mental retardation and multiple disabilities for works pertaining to guardianship certificate and other issues.

Source : TOI , 24th Sep 2015


Towards kinder society - Ramlans Trust launches Children for Charity prog - Managluru

In a laudable effort to inculcate and encourage the habit of giving among children, Ramlans Charitable Trust on Saturday September 26 launched 'Children for Charity Programme' at St Aloysius High School auditorium here.
St Aloysius High School is the first school to enroll in this programme.

Addressing the gathering, Zeeshan Ramlan, managing trustee, Ramlans Charitable Trust said, "The main intention of the programme is that the student does at least one work of charity, like donating pencils, old clothes, notebooks, old toys or giving a bowl of rice to the poor on the street. The students also have to write about the work of charity they do during the academic year, and submit to the class teacher, and at the end of the year, we will award the one best student for the best work of charity as a token of appreciation. The St Aloysius High School has 720 students which eqauls to 720 charity works and thousands of poor will benefit from it.

"The main intention of the programme is also that the student should develop the habit of giving and help the less fortunate ones. I thank St Aloysius High School for being the first school to enroll for the Children for Charity Programme. St Aloysius School is very close to my heart as I completed my education here," he added

Fr Edward Rodrigues, headmaster of St Aloysius High School said, " I am very happy that Zeeshan Ramlan is motivating the students and inculcating the habit of giving in them. The attitude of giving is generally lacking in students as they only expect to get during adolescence. Zeeshan was a student of this school. He is young, and it is commendable that while most of the youngsters are busy in earning, he is keen in giving to the poor. If the children adopt the habit of giving at this age the world will be a better place to live in."
The Children for Charity Programme aims at encouraging school kids to take up at least one charity work in the academic year. Through a holistic four step programme, the trust will teach students the most noble of all habits, that is, the habit of giving.
The programmel included a presentation to students on the importance of charity.

The students will need to prepare a half page write up about their social work at the end of the year.The best charity work will be awarded towards the end of the year.

In the next one month, Ramlans Charitable Trust also plans to target over 10,000 students from Mangaluru, and it will be an ongoing programme this year.

Ramlans Charitable Trust has conducted 27 initiatives over the last two years, including sponsoring education, providing financial aid to carry out weddings, construction of houses for the underprivileged, health camps, revamping old age homes, fun evenings, dream camps for HIV-positive kids, monetary aid to the physically challenged and distributio of food to the needy on the streets.

Source : Daiji World , 26th Sep 2015

Barrier-free access to disabled soon - Bhubaneshwar

The state capital has been included in the Sugamya Bharat Scheme, launched by the Centre, under which around 100 government buildings will be made accessible for persons with disabilities.

These buildings will be assessed by accessibility auditors and the Centre will provide funds to make them disabled-friendly, said union secretary, department of empowerment of persons with disabilities, Luv Burma here on Wednesday.

"The aim of the project is to provide barrier-free access to persons with disabilities at public places. The process to identify the buildings will begin soon," he said, while speaking at the Odisha Youth Conclave, a skill-development training programme for persons with disabilities.

Campaigner Sruti Mohapatra said, "It is really strange that majority of the public places don't have facilities for the disabled. The new scheme will not only ensure accessibility for persons with disabilities but also empower them to highlight the issue by clicking a picture of a place without similar facilities and uploading it on the website."

Burma said the Centre is also planning provide identity cards, which will be valid across the country, to 2.68 crore persons with disabilities. The card will be linked to Aadhar to allow them to avail other benefits. "The new card will be issued on World Disability Day on December 3," Burma added.

Chief secretary G C Pati emphasized on entrepreneurship development among the disabled youths to help them start their own enterprise.
Source : TOI , 24th Sep 2015  

Artificial limbs distributed to 65 persons at a camp - Varanasi

Around 65 disabled persons from Varanais and adjoining villages were handed over artificial limbs prepared by Noida-based Center for Empowerment and Initiatives (CEI) at a limb distribution camp organised by an organization, Marwadi Yuva Manch (MYM), Kashi at Marwadi Yuvak Sangh in Luxa on Wednesday.

Rishabh Chaudhary of MYM said they had started registration about two months ago and registered as many as 89 people who had lost their limbs in different mishaps. The three-day camp that commenced on September 21, witnessed assessment of the disabled people and construction of artificial limbs followed by distribution of limbs on Wednesday.

The rehabilitation specialist of CEI, Dr. Anand Kumar Shukla informed that while artificial limbs were distributed among 42 amputees (above knee and below knee), calipers for polio legs were distributed among 10 people on Wednesday. "We also distributed axillary crutches among five persons and suggested exercises to others," said Shukla.

TOI caught up with a few disabled people who shared their days of struggle after mishap. "A truck hit my vehicle after which my right limb was amputated. I am glad to get an artificial leg," said Murari Lal of Rae-Bareli, who runs his own business. Another Beju of Gopiganj in Bhadohi said, "I no longer feel useless. I can get a job and earn bread for my family which depends on me solely."

Source : TOI , 24th Sep 2015

Visually Challenged TN Professors Resume stir for College Job

It was in the year 2012 when aspiring visually challenged professors took to the streets demanding fair treatment and employment in government and aided schools and colleges in the State. Three years later, however, their plight continues to be the same.

“Sometimes I feel sick of protesting, but if I don’t we would all continue to live downtrodden and sympathetic lives,” said an agitated V Vinod, member of College Students and Graduates Association for the Blind.

Over 50 visually challenged students and graduates assembled outside the DPI campus on Tuesday morning demanding fair employment opportunities for all. They insisted on meeting the Social Welfare Minister B Valarmathi, who they claimed had promised to provide employment opportunities last year. “Last year when we protested the officials had promised to meet our demands, that’s why we gave it up. Since then, none of us have been placed in any school or varsity,” said R Raja, a PhD graduate in Tamil language who has been to over seven colleges in the last few months for interviews. He claimed that most of the interviewers passed discriminatory comments. “They would ask questions like ‘Will you be able to climb four floors to take a class’..... The usual comment would be ‘We shall get back to you’ but they never do,” he said.

As many as 233 visually impaired people have cleared the National Eligibility Test and the State Eligibility Test in Tamil Nadu this year, and there are over 162 aided institutions in the State each having minimum 30 departments. In 2013, the Supreme Court directed the Centre and the States to provide three per cent job reservation to disabled persons in all their departments, companies under the Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act of 1995. While it has been enforced in New Delhi, Mumbai and a few other places, activists allege that TN did badly in this aspect. “Nobody wants to hire us. They plainly tell us ‘What is it that you can do that a normal person can’t’,” said Vinod.

After a day long protest at the DPI, the group walked to the Secretariat and gave their petition to the principal secretary of Higher Education department. They will attend a meeting with the State Commissioner for Disabled and the Principal Secretary at 11 am on Wednesday.

Source : The New Indian Express , 23rd Sep 2015

Disabled citizens protest municipal harassment, apathy - Dehradun

Agitated by the Dehradun Municipal Corporation's (DMC) failure in providing permanent space for disabled citizens to set up stalls, nearly 40 of them locked the main gate of the corporation in protest on Monday.

DMC has given licence for mobile stalls to 53 disabled people, but these have been of no use to them. On the contrary, the stalls would add to their burden because most of the beneficiaries use crutches. The disabled citizens are now demanding permanent booths on the lines of those given by the Municipal Corporation of Delhi.

"The corporation can allot us space for setting up permanent booths on vacant land if it is actually willing to make us independent, like MCD. This move will help us in becoming economically and socially stronger. Instead, the corporation has suggested that we keep a helper to run the mobile stall smoothly. It is ironic that we have not been able to make both ends meet and they are merely giving us suggestions so that we can run a business selling vegetables," said Sanjeev Kumar, vice-chairperson, Nanda Devi Hapless Handicapped Peoples' Association.

However, the corporation has rejected their demand outright. Mayor Vinod Chamoli said, "There is a huge difference between the municipal acts of Dehradun and Delhi. The disabled beneficiaries here are not aware of the scant powers that the Dehradun corporation has and are therefore demanding things out of our purview. It is a state matter. If the Uttarakhand government comes up with some special scheme or policy crafted for these people, then the corporation shall provide all possible support."

Meanwhile, the corporation allegedly knowingly removed the stall of one of the disabled beneficiaries from LIC Mandi, citing non-availability of licence. However, his neighbour, who also allegedly did not have a licence, was not affected.

CP Thapliyal (40) has polio in both legs and is the only earning member of his family. The corporation today took away his stall without giving any prior notice. "I have been left with nothing except a bank loan. The corporation resorted to such measures after disabled beneficiaries protested. This is suppression of our voice and indirect mental harassment," alleged Thapliyal.

Infuriated, disabled citizens are now planning to meet the chief minister on Tuesday to place their demands in front of him. "We will seek at least 100 permanent booths for disabled persons not just in Dehradun but across all 13 districts of the state," said Kumar. As per municipal corporation guidelines, 10 percent 'space' has to be allotted to physically challenged vendors in markets.

Source : TOI , 21st Sep 2015

CMRL to Make Underground and Elevated Stations Disabled-Friendly

The Chennai Metro Rail Limited (CMRL) will be taking initiatives to make the currently-running and the upcoming underground and elevated stations more accessible for persons with disabilities.

There are no facilities on platforms to help wheelchair-bound people board a train. | EPS
Despite recommendations submitted by the Disability Rights Alliance (DRA) in 2012, there have been issues of access in the currently running stations from Alandur to Koyambedu. This has been alleged as a case of contractor oversight.

As of September 23, the CMRL has agreed to cooperate with the DRA in rectifying these issues soon. It should be pointed out that the CMRL is being accommodating after the DRA completed an access-audit in August this year. “We had submitted a draft with recommendations for disabled-friendly fixtures and facilities three years ago. Though CMRL follows international standards in operation, the access to persons with disabilities was not addressed effectively,” said Smitha Sadasivan, DRA.

From accessing doors and the walky-talkies in the elevators to getting the wheelchairs from the platform into the trains, there have been several recommendations put forth by DRA.  In a communication to the CMRL recently, an official from the DRA said that these passengers still have issues reaching for the token counter, help desk and even the toilets, which have been constructed at an inaccessible height.

Sankar, from Agate Infotek, has been chosen by the DRA as the consultant to liaise with CMRL. He will be a part of the team that will also have third-party consultants to combat this inefficiency. “The response has been very positive from CMRL’s side, and all stations are being designed to be more accessible for persons with disabilities,” he stated.

Source : The New Indian Express , 26th Sep 2015 

Public buildings in Mumbai, key Indian cities to be made disabled friendly

The Minister of Social Justice and Empowerment on Thursday launched Accessible India campaign to make public buildings, public transportation, signage accessible to Persons with Disabilities.

The Centre will identify more than 50 buildings in 50 major cities and make them fully accessible to Persons with Disabilities using retrofitted ramps, disabled-friendly lifts, toilets as well as signage as part of the Accessible India campaign launched by the Ministry of Social Justice on Thursday.

Launching a nation-wide flagship campaign for achieving universal accessibility for the Persons with Disabilities, Union Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment Thawarchand Gehlot said the Centre will also make 75 important railway stations as well as key domestic airports also fully accessible to the Persons with Disabilities by July 2016.

Four cities from Maharashtra including Mumbai, Pune, Nagpur, and Nashik will figure in the list of cities for the Accessible India campaign, also christened the Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan.

India is a signatory to the UN Convention in the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) to take appropriate measures to ensure to accessibility to the Persons with Disabilities. The three-year-old Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities, which comes under the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, has launched the campaign to improve accessibility for the disabled in physical environment, public transportation, information and communication and knowledge.

Mr. Gehlot said of the estimated 26.8 million Persons with Disabilities, less than half have been provided with disability certificates. “It is duty of government to provide help to the Persons with Disabilities. We are trying to resolve their problems. We don’t have exact information about the number of disabled people in our country. The number available in the 2011 census is superficial. They also face problems in obtaining the disability certificate, which sometimes is not considered valid in another district or state,” Mr. Gehlot said.

In order to remove this problem, he announced that the government will issue Universal Identity Cards which will have a unique number to all the Persons with Disabilities within next one and half years. The cards will be valid nationally.

Stating that the present definition of disability was not inclusive enough covering only seven types of disabilities, Mr Gehlot said, the government has decided to increase the number of disabilities to 19 from the present 7, in a bid to expand the pool of beneficiaries and make it more inclusive.

Chief Minister of Maharashtra Devendra Fadnavis, who was also present at the campaign inauguration, assured full assistance to the campaign from his government. “In our country, we had many rules for the disabled citizens but there was not a system to implement those. We will make this campaign our mission and will assure that they get their rights. In democracy, the government is responsible for their well being,” he said.

The department also launched Accessible India Mobile App and web portal on this occasion. The app will rely on crowd sourcing information about inaccessible buildings. It enable users to upload a photograph or video of an inaccessible public building such as school or library etc directly to the Accessible India web portal, bringing the problem to the notice of the authorities. The portal will process the request for access audit, financial sanction and final retrofitting of the building to make it completely accessible.

Actor Vivek Oberoi has also extended his support to the campaign and was present at the campaign launch though it is unclear if he would be the ambassador for the campaign. 

Source : The Hindu , 26th Sep 2015

A Haji’s travails

In India and several parts of the world, when the Hajis (those who perform the Haj) return home from Mecca and Medina, those unable to make the trip kiss their hands in reverence.

Ironically, in Saudi Arabia - the land where Islam's holiest cities, Mecca and Medina, are located -- the Haj pilgrims are treated with scant respect.

The Hajis are hustled and shoved around, poked with batons, and spoken to rudely by the Saudi Muttawa (law enforcers) and Mabahith (the intelligence police). The ill-treatment starts the moment the pilgrims step out of their hotels and venture towards the holy sites.

Last year, when I visited Saudi Arabia, I realised that Medina is probably the most tranquil and serene city in the kingdom. It is a developing city, but bereft of the traffic woes of other cities in Saudi Arabia. The law enforcers were not intrusive and left us alone, unlike in Mecca. The moment I landed in Mecca, the hectic construction around the Circular Mosque of Kaaba dampened the fervour of the spiritual journey. The approach to the Masjid-ul-Haram is quite complicated, and takes one through many a diversion, leaving one exhausted.

The elderly and the physically challenged found the entire experience daunting and exhausting every time they stepped out of the confines of their hotels to visit the Grand Mosque. I felt the Saudi administration could have suspended the constructions a few weeks ahead of the Haj season. Who knows, a stoppage in the construction near the holy site could have saved the lives of the pilgrims who died in the recent crane accident during the commencement of the Haj this year.

Things get worse once the pilgrims start proceeding towards the plains of Arafat, which is 3-km from Mecca. Long queues outside the limited number of toilets, bad drainage, unhygienic sanitation, inconvenient traffic restrictions which are just illogical... these are some of the things that start bogging down the Hajis. The Hajis also need to spend a couple of nights in the tents of Mina. I thought that a bit of application of mind and planning could make the Mina sojourn a pleasant one. But once again, the closure of several pathways, and circuitous routes frustrated the Hajis.

I believe the Saudi Police could take a leaf out of the Mumbai Police's handling of religious processions. I'm witness to this: the Mumbai Police handle the public with kid gloves during religious processions. For instance, during the Ganpati immersion days, the Mumbai cops are cooperative and courteous, and despite putting in long hours and getting hardly any rest, they rarely lose their cool.

In contrast, the pilgrims in Saudi Arabia have to put up with ill-mannered cops, who seem to be angry all the time. I was pained to see the treatment meted out to the poor Hajis who were sleeping on the pavement near Masjid-e-Kheef, in the south of Mina. The Saudi traffic cops were mercilessly caning those who did not wake up to the prayer call in the morning. Often, the cops would halt their vehicles near the sleeping pilgrims, and would honk incessantly to wake them up. This is no way to treat any human being, leave alone those on a spiritual journey.

As the custodians of the holy sites, the Saudis are expected to be a little more humane. The worst treatment is of course reserved for the pilgrims from the economically-weaker nations. Even after the stampede on Thursday, in which more than 700 people lost their lives, the medical readiness seemed to be missing. The eyewitnesses recalled that some of the victims were still breathing and could have been saved with timely medical intervention.

What is surprising is that Saudi Arabia, with all its wealth, does not have the wherewithal to streamline mob-management. Even an economically backward and war-torn country such as Iraq exceptionally handles a crowd of 30 million pilgrims in Karbala every year. Saudi Arabia has to deal with 2 million pilgrims during the Haj. 

Source : Mumbai Mirror , 26th Sep 2015 

'False Flag' Alarm Over PM Narendra Modi's Autograph

A controversy erupted Friday on social media, after Prime Minister Narendra Modi autographed an alleged Indian flag that was to be presented to US President Barack Obama by celebrity chef Vikas Khanna.

A cloth painting reportedly signed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and handed over to celebrity chef Vikas Khanna in New York. | ANI

A cloth painting reportedly signed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and handed over to celebrity chef Vikas Khanna in New York


Reports suggested the Ministry of External Affairs had taken the flag back from the chef after it came to light that writing anything on it was a violation of the Indian Flag Code.

Government spokesman Frank Noronha, however, denied that the PM had signed the flag and said it had not been confiscated either. Noronha, Director General (Media and Communication), Press Information Bureau, said the piece of cloth was a work of handicraft prepared by the physically-challenged daughter of the chef, and the Prime Minister had autographed it on compassionate basis after Khanna and his family made a request.

“The piece of cloth does not have white colour nor the wheel....It has been prepared by Khanna’s daughter with her toe and the Prime Minister was compassionate,” he clarified and termed as “absolutely false” reports that it had been confiscated. Khanna had prepared the menu for the Prime Minister’s dinner with Fortune 500 CEOs on Thursday night. The Prime Minister told the chef that he had done him proud. The chef later displayed the piece of cloth and tweeted that it was “Make in India insignia with Ashoka Chakra gears hand painted by Smile Foundation Children. Not the national flag.”

According to the Indian Flag Code-2002, putting any kind of inscription  or lettering upon the Indian national flag is construed as disrespect to the flag.

Despite the clarifications, reactions in the virtual world came thick and fast. The opposition Congress too grabbed the opportunity to score a few points. The party’s chief spokesman Randeep Surjewala said, “However high you may be, the national flag is above you, you should understand this.” Asked if the Prime Minister’s action was an offence under the IPC, he said, “we are not petty like the BJP. We respect the office of the Prime Minister.”

At the same time, he said the Prime Minister must look within and take ‘corrective action’ as respect for the national flag is the responsibility of 125 crore people and more so, of the Prime Minister. His party colleague Manish Tewari tweeted, “Has PM read Para 2.1 sub para 6& Para 3.28 of Flag Code 2002 that states lettering on National Flag is misuse.3 yrs jail under PINH Act 2003.”

Source : The New Indian Express , 26th Sep 2015 

Differently abled girl EC icon for Gaya district

The Election Commission (EC) has selected Nidhi, a physically challenged girl, as its Gaya district icon to motivate voters.

Nidhi was formally launched as the icon at a function held at Gaya collectorate on Thursday. District magistrate Sanjay Agrawal presided over the function. Nidhi, had exercised her franchise for the first time in 2014 LS elections.

Introducing Nidhi, who has both speech and hearing disorder, DM-cum-district election officer Agrawal said Nidhi represents the 'silent' voters, whose decision counts a lot during the elections in the selection of representatives. This group speaks through the ballot, said the DM. Expressing happiness over EC nod to make Nidhi, the voter icon, Agrawal said Nidhi would be moving in each block to motivate the voters to vote in a fearless manner.

There are altogether 26,73,969 voters spread over 10 assembly segments of the district. They include 12,70,825 women voters. Bodh Gaya with 2,88,093 voters has got the highest number while Sherghati with 2,47,117 voters has got the minimum number. The number of voters in Gaya town assembly segment is 2,47,353.

Nidhi, a resident of Khairti village under Bodh Gaya block is a master of fine arts from Jagatguru Raghvendracharya Handicapped University, Chitrakoot, UP. She is also a recipient of Chancellor's gold medal for her paintings. During her visit to the blocks, Nidhi's paintings too would be displayed to motivate the voters. Besides voters, Nidhi will also motivate the differently abled children to come forward and carve a niche for themselves.

"Children suffering from physical disadvantages are not disabled, they are just differently abled," said Nidhi's father Jugal Kishore Dwivedi, an electrician.

Source : The Times of India, 25th Sep 2015

Disability aside, this 21-year-old spends her free time teaching underprivileged kids

  • Diksha Dinde teaches underprivileged kids every weekend, despite her disability to walk.
    Diksha Dinde teaches underprivileged kids every weekend, despite her disability to walk.
Physically challenged by birth, Diksha Dinde, 21, has been setting a fine example for her fellow peers by teaching underprivileged students at a community school, 'Bal Bhavan.'

Dinde got associated with Bal Bhavan three years back as a teacher for children between 5 to 15 years. She takes weekend classes for the children and conducts activity based learning for them along with volunteers of an NGO. 

As a child, Dinde was rejected by a city based school due to her disability in walking. She had then joined a municipal run school till 7th standard.

Knowing well about the shortfalls in a government school and learning from her experience, she designs her teaching for the community school kids accordingly. "I have completed my studies in a municipal school. It was only after I scored well in boards that I got a good college to complete my graduation. Usually, children studying in municipal schools do not get trained in English, basic manners, etiquettes and gender sensitivity," said Dinde.

"It is a little tiring but teaching these kids have helped me learn as well," said Dinde.

Despite being physically challenged, Dinde’s spirit to make a difference in the society gives her the energy to keep going. "I travel behind my mother or other volunteers to ‘Bal Bhavan’ to spend a few hours there. It is a little tiring but teaching these kids have helped me learn as well. I have observed a change in the way I look at life. These kids go through a lot of hardships. They taught me that it is always better to smile for what you have, rather than crave for what you don’t," she said.

Dinde feels that it is the duty of today's young generation to encourage education and impart knowledge to all. "All these kids have the ability but lack opportunities. These unfortunate kids need be taught morals and ethics. The more they learn, the lesser are the chances of them joining the drug addicts and alcoholics breeding in their area," she added. Dinde, now preparing for competitive exams, is on a break from teaching at Bal Bhavan, but will re-join soon.

Source : I am in DNA of Pune , 25th Sep 2015

Lord’s Darshan: Padma Shri awardee seeks ‘special facilities’ for ‘disables’ - Bhubaneshwar

Knocks the doors of Puri Collector

Kanhubhai is national chief of Physically-challenged Kalyan Trust Makes up mind to move Supreme Court.

Puri Sri Mandir hogs the headlines for yet again another wrong reason.

Deprived of facilities for a hassle-free darshan of Lord Jagannath and His siblings in the sanctum sanctorum, Padma Shri Kanhubhai Hashmukhbhai Tailor on Friday knocked the doors of the Puri District Collector Arvind Agrawal and sought ‘special facilities’ for all physically-challenged devotees for a hassle-free glimpse of the deities inside the world-renowned shrine.

The Padma Shri awardee is the national president of the Physically-challenged Kalyan Trust.

Kanhubhai, who is unable to move without a wheelchair, was allegedly denied entry into the Shree Jagannath Temple on Thursdayon his wheelchair and was instead taken inside later lifted by some people.

PrameyaNews7 Puri Correspondent reported that Kanhubhai was taken inside in such a way that it turned to be a sore of the onlookers’ eyes and has been a talk of the pilgrim town.

On Friday, the Padma Shri awardee met Puri District Collector Arvind Agrawal and sought ‘special facilities’ for all physically-challenged devotees for a hassle-free glimpse of the deities inside the world-renowned shrine.

He also reportedly expressed his displeasure at the utter mismanagement and misdemeanor at a famous Hindu temple like the Puri Jagannath Temple popular as one of the four Hindu ‘Dhamas’.

He also informed that he would file a public interest litigation (PIL) in the Supreme Court in this regard so that people like him having physical disabilities face no harrowing experience in future as hassle-free darshan of the Lord in the sanctum sanctorum is a part of their fundamental right.

Source : Prameya News, 25th Sep 2015  

National benefit system for China's disabled to launch next year

China's cabinet is planning a nationwide program to provide the country's disabled people with daily necessities and rehabilitation from next year.

A blind woman walks with the help of a guide dog in Lanzhou, Gansu province, June 5. (File photo/Xinhua)              A blind woman walks with the help of a guide dog in Lanzhou, Gansu province

"Living allowances for disabled people in need and subsidies to cover treatment and rehabilitation of the severely disabled will be fully implemented on Jan. 1, 2016," said a document released Friday by the State Council.

While many provincial level regions offer their own financial support to the disabled, the plan is the country's first nationwide benefit program and will cover an estimated 20 million people.
China's cabinet is planning a nationwide program to provide the country's disabled people with daily necessities and rehabilitation from next year.

"Living allowances for disabled people in need and subsidies to cover treatment and rehabilitation of the severely disabled will be fully implemented on Jan. 1, 2016," said a document released Friday by the State Council.

While many provincial level regions offer their own financial support to the disabled, the plan is the country's first nationwide benefit program and will cover an estimated 20 million people.

According to the document, subsidies are to be determined by provincial level governments based on "local economic and social development levels as well as the demands of beneficiaries" and can be adjusted accordingly with the cabinet's guidance.

Currently, most regions where the program is being tried out adopt a standard of 50 yuan (US$7.85) or 100 yuan (US$15.68) every month for each person, but the figure can surpass 700 yuan (US$110) in expensive cities like Shanghai.

Despite specific application requirements and procedures, better developed regions were encouraged to lower the thresholds and include more disabled people as beneficiaries.

China has about 80 million people with physical or mental disabilities.

Source : Want China Times , 26th Sep 2015 

How Fit Is India For A Physically Disabled Person?

Disability in a person may or may not be something that he is born with. Whatever the case, till now, it has been an enormous challenge for the disable to survive in India. From the time they get up till the time they go to bed is a challenge. Something as simple as walking or jogging that fits in our daily routine is incapability for the physically handicapped person. Something as simple as reading the daily newspaper could be at par to solving a difficult math problem for a person with dyslexia. And imagine how the deaf, dumb and blind might be surviving through the daily work that we find difficult to finish!

How Fit Is India For A Physically Disabled Person?

Whenever we spot a physically handicapped person, our expression morphs into pity.  More often than not we try to help the person while crossing the road or explaining the signs, etc.

But did you know that a person coming under the PHP (physically handicapped category) is not one in a million in India?

Statistics suggest that, according to the United Nations, around one billion people live with disabilities globally — they are the world’s largest minority.

Of this number, as many as 40-80 million live in India, through the underdeveloped infrastructure.

However, thankfully, the spotlight has finally fallen on making disabled friendly infrastructure for by the Government of India for those who are not as privileged as us.

Four main cities for every state have been appointed to be a part of the national accessibility campaign to aid the disabled with more disabled-friendly public and transport facilities. Mumbai is among the 4 cities in Maharashtra to be a part of this followed by Pune, Nagpur and Nashik.

So far, Maharashtra is the only state to make it compulsory for every department to have a scheme for procuring disability access products. However an IT secretary for Maharashtra, Rajesh Aggarwal  quotes otherwise,

Except for metro, none of our public transport systems are disabled-friendly. As per the national building code of India, while giving permissions for public buildings there must be a checklist to ensure that buildings and toilers are wheelchair and blind friendly. Similarly hotels must have few rooms which are disabled friendly. This awareness has not set in yet. 

The campaign:
Accessible India Campaign: Creation of Accessible Environment for PwDs

In order to provide complete accessibility to the people with disabilities, this campaign is launched for them to gain equal opportunity, live independently and participate fully in all aspects of life in an inclusive society. It’s primary motive is to enhance access to the physical environment, public transportation, knowledge, information and communication.

The government of India targets at providing a society that has equal number of opportunities for the (PwDs), providing them with a built environment, transport system, Information and Communication eco-system so as to help them lead happy, safe and dignified lives.

It has been conceptualized as the ‘Accessible India Campaign (Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan) as a nation-wide flagship campaign for achieving universal accessibility.

Improvements in Transport for the disabled:

The Union government has asked each state, including Maharashtra, to identify 50-100 public buildings in major cities to be made easily accessible for persons with disabilities.

Among the Indian Airlines, Jet Airways and Air India provide disabled friendly travel in India. They provide designated parking areas for the physically handicapped. And in order to make the journey more comfortable, they have a facility of customizing your journey on the basis of length, size, breadth and weight so that the necessary arrangements are made for the flight is ready to take off.

In Indian railways too, there are necessary arrangements made for the PHPs. There are standard ramps for the travelers for accessing easy entry and exit in trains, non-slippery walkways in parking lots, and facility of at least one drinking water tap, toilet in the ground floor to ensure an easy access for a person with Disability.

Metros too have specially built elevators on the metro station for the easy accessibility for disabled.

For the visually challenged, there are buttons with inscriptions and tiles with tactile markings are provided.

There are special spots marked for the wheelchairs too.

Creating Awareness:

Training programs, ad campaigns, awareness camps, etc have been conducted by the government and NGOs working in favor of the PwDs so that more and more people are aware and sensitized over this issue. Teachers are provided with training over how to deal with a student suffering from a mental disorder. Different schools for special children have been constructed across India, so that the children do not feel ignored or targeted by the other children in school.

Speaking at an inauguration of a workshop on accessibility on Thursday, Thawar Chand Gehlot, Union minister for social justice and empowerment contributed with his views saying that the present definition of disability is not inclusive enough as it only covers seven types of disabilities. Out of the 26.8 million persons with disabilities, less than half have been provided with disability certificate. This statement goes far off by saying how sensitized and aware we are towards the problems and insecurities of the persons having disabilities. Even though the improvement is taking place at a slow pace, we are hoping for some concrete steps taken by the government in the favour of the PwDs population, in order to create a healthy environment for them. 

Source: Rise for India, 25th Sep 2015

Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan to make India disabled friendly

Getting around the physical built-up environment is something most of which take for granted. Stairs, sidewalk, gratings, obstructions, curves, narrow passages etc. are barriers, we walk over, around, or through any routine course.  But, for those with disability, a curb or few stairs can be a big barrier.  We seldom pay attention to traffic signals, audio announcements, signs which give us information or direction to use various facilities. Signs, no matter how well placed and how much information rich are users for persons with visual impairment or hearing impairment unless designed properly.

We are all physically disabled at some time in our lives.  A person with a broken leg, a child, a mother with a pram, an elderly gentleman etc. are all disabled in some way or another. Thus, Needs of the disabled coincide with the needs of majority, and all people are at ease with them.  As such, designing the facilities for the majority implies designing and planning for people with varying abilities and disabilities.

An important aim of the society is to integrate persons with disabilities in the society so that they can actively participate in society and lead a normal life.  Ideally, a disabled person should be able to commute between home, work place and other destinations with independence, convenience and safety. The more persons with disabilities are able to access physical facilities, the more they will be part of the social mainstream.

With firm commitment of the government towards socio-economic transformation of the persons with disabilities there is an urgent need to create mass awareness for universal accessibility. India is a signatory to the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD).  Article 9 of UNCRPD casts an obligation on all the signatory governments to take appropriate measures to ensure to persons with disabilities access, on an equal basis with others, to the physical environment, to transportation, to information and communications, including information and communications technologies and systems, and to other facilities and services open or provided to the public, both in urban and in rural areas.

Subsequently, governments of ESCAP region gathered in Incheon, Republic of Korea from 29.10.2012 to 02.11.2012 and adopted the Incheon Strategy to “Make the Rights Real” for persons with disabilities in Asia and the Pacific.  The Incheon Strategy builds on the UNCRPD and provides the first regionally agreed disability inclusive “Development Goals”.  Goal No. 3 of the Incheon Strategy mentions that access to the physical environment, public transportation, knowledge, information and communication is a pre-condition for persons with disabilities to fulfill their rights in an inclusive society.  The accessibility of urban, rural and remote areas based on universal design increases safety and ease of use not only for persons with disabilities, but also for all other members of the society.

Persons with Disabilities (Equal Opportunities. Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act 1995 under Section 44, 45 and 46 also categorically provides for non-discrimination in participation, non-discrimination of the roads and built up environment.  As per Section 46 of the PwD Act, the States are required to provide for :

i)     Ramps in public buildings

ii)    Provision of toilets for wheelchair users

iii)   Braille symbols and auditory signals in elevators or lifts

iv)   Ramps in hospitals, primary health centres and other rehabilitation centres.

Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (DEPwD), Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, has formulated the Accessible India Campaign (Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan), as a nation-wide campaign for achieving universal accessibility for PwDs.  The campaign targets three separate verticals for achieving universal accessibility namely the built up environment, transportation eco-system and information & communication eco-system.  The campaign has ambitious targets with defined timelines and will use IT and social media for spreading awareness about the campaign and seeking commitment / engagement of various stakeholders.  

The Department has asked various State Govts. to identify about 50 to 100 public buildings in big cities and also identify citizen centric  public websites, which if made fully accessible would have the highest impact on the lives of PwDs.  Once identified, “Access Audit” of these buildings and websites will be conducted by professional agencies.  As per the audit findings, retrofitting and conversion of buildings,  transport and websites would be undertaken by various government departments. This will be supported by the Scheme of Implementation of Persons with Disabilities Act (SIPDA), an umbrella scheme run by the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (DEPwD) for implementing various initiatives for social and economic empowerment of PwDs.

Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities is collaborating with Ministry of Home, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and Ministry of Tourism for creating ‘Accessible police stations’, “Accessible hospitals’ and ‘Accessible tourism’ respectively across the country.  The Department is also coordinating with the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting for enhancing accessibility of Television programmes by incorporating features like captioning, text to speech and audio description.

DEPwD is also in the process of creating a mobile app, along with a web portal for crowd sourcing the requests regarding inaccessible places. With the app, downloaded on his/her mobile phone, any person would be able to click a photograph or video of an inaccessible public place (like a school, hospital, government office etc.) and upload the same to the Accessible India portal. The portal will process the request for access audit, financial sanction and final retrofitting of the building to make it completely accessible. The mobile app and portal will also seek engagement of big corporates and PSUs to partner in the campaign by offering their help to conduct access audit and for accessibility- conversion of the buildings/transport and websites.

As an offshoot to the campaign, Department has also sought Expression of Interest from IT firms to prepare a mobile app in all Indian languages to locate nearest accessible places. With this mobile app, any disabled person would be able to locate an accessible bank counter, restaurant, ATM or theatre (and similar facilities) nearby.  The mobile app will also have provision of evaluating / rating the accessible place by the users.
DEPwD is intensively engaging with public even before launching the campaign. For example, the department sought inputs for the logo and tagline of the Accessible India Campaign on MyGov platform and received more than 500 entries for each of these. 

PIB Feature with inputs provided by Department of Empowerment of Persons With Disabilities, Ministry of Social Justice & Empowerment, Government of India.

Source: Kemmannu News Network , 25th Sep 2015

Russian Textbook Claiming Disabled People are 'Not Individuals' Is Yanked From Sale

A Russian publishing company has suspended the sale of a social studies textbook that prompted an outcry with its message that people with developmental disabilities are neither individuals nor citizens.

The Moscow-based Drofa publishing house will submit the textbook for "additional expert analysis," and would be "ready to recall" the book and offer an alternative manual if the original text fails to secure experts' approval, the company's chief editor Ruslan Gagkuyev said in a statement on the publishers' website Thursday.

The eighth-grade textbook provoked outrage after a Moscow-based literary critic, Anna Narinskaya, said she heard her son reading out from the book and posted scans of its pages on Facebook social network.
"Imagine a person who suffers from a serious psychological disorder since early childhood," the textbook reads. "He is incapable of studying, working, creating a family, of anything that forms the spiritual world of an individual. In other words, he is not an individual."

The textbook analyzes the concept of a "citizen," saying that only those who are individuals — as previously defined — qualify as citizens.

The book — co-edited by Drofa's former chief of history and social sciences department, Tatyana Nikitina, and a doctor of education and laureate of a presidential award, Anatoly Nikitin — is included on the Education and Science Ministry's list of recommended school manuals, according to an order published on the ministry's website.

The textbook had "passed all the necessary expert reviews, and having received positive evaluations, was included in the federal list of [school] manuals," Gagkuyev said in his statement.
Copies of this textbook for Moscow schools have been paid for out of the state budget, Izvestia daily reported Wednesday.

Russian activists published a petition on the website, urging the Education and Science Ministry to recall the textbook — which they compared to the writings of "Nazi psychiatrist" Alfred Hoche, who called for the killing of mentally ill persons, deeming them "ballast existences."

The petition seeks 1,500 signatures, and by Friday morning, it had gathered more than 1,000.

One of the petition's authors, Yelena Klochko, who sits on Russia's Civic Chamber and on the government's advisory panel on social issues, said the textbook "goes against common sense, against humanity, against the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities," reported Wednesday.
Head of the Center for Autism Problems, Yekaterina Men, denounced the textbook's assertions as "fascist," the report said.

"Any ideas claiming there is a group of people that is worse than another group of people are fascist," she said, reported. "And if we are talking about people, it does not matter what disabilities they might have; this cannot be grounds for somebody to decide whether they are individuals, whether they can study, work, have rights. Because everyone has human rights."

Besides denying people with developmental disabilities their individuality and citizens' rights, the textbook also offers Russian schoolchildren wisdom on gender issues, claiming a "real man" must be intelligent and strong, while a "real woman" must be pretty.

"A man, even if he is still attending school, wants to be a real man — intelligent and strong," the passage reads. "A girl, even if she is still very young in age, can already guess that a real woman is pretty, elegant, possessed of a supple, athletic walk and and a confident glance."

Source : The Moscow Times , 25th Sep 2015

Empowerment of the disabled to be taken up as a mission: Fadnavis

The state government has decided to take up empowerment of Persons with Disabilities in a mission mode, Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said on Thursday as he kickstarted the ‘Sugamya Bharat Abhiyan’ [Accessible India Campaign] along with Union Minister for Social Justice and Empowerment Thawarchand Gehlot.

“Governments have the primary responsibility of creating an accessible environment for the Persons with Disabilities,” Fadnavis said. He observed that even though there were many laws and policies protecting the rights of Persons with Disabilities, implementation at the ground level has been far from being satisfactory.

Under the campaign, the centre has asked each state to identify 50-100 public buildings in big cities to be made easily accessible for Persons with Disabilities.

“Centre has drawn up a plan to identify at least 50 most important public buildings in 26 major metro cities and state capitals and at least 25 buildings in 22 other cities and capitals of smaller states and Union Territories. The identified buildings will then be made fully accessible to Persons with Disabilities via retrofitting of ramps, disabled-friendly lifts, toilets as well as signages. In addition, 75 important Railway Stations and all the important domestic airports will be made fully accessible by July 2016,” Gehlot said.

Four cities from Maharashtra viz. Mumbai, Pune, Nagpur and Nashik figure in the list of cities for the campaign.

Gehlot also said that of the 26.8 million Persons with Disabilities, less than half had been provided with disability certificates. To increase inclusiveness, the government has decided to increase the number of disabilities to 19 from the present 7 and universal identity cards with a unique number will be provided within the next year and a half.

It was also announced that the Department of Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities is in the process of creating a mobile app along with a web portal for crowd-sourcing requests regarding inaccessible places.

With the app, any person would be able to click a photograph or video of an inaccessible public place – say a school, library or any other public building and upload the same to the ‘Accessible India’ portal. The portal will process the request for access audit, financial sanction and final retrofitting of the building to make it completely accessible.

Source : The Free Press Journal , 25th Sep 2015